The Carlisle strategy summarized:
Continue to grow in markets we understand and in which we can achieve sustainable leadership
Achieve and maintain the low cost provider position
Differentiate our service
Maximize free cash flow
We will continue to choose competitive arenas in which we can prevail as the low cost producer and in which we can provide industry-leading service.
In 2001 we continued to make synergistic acquisitions that enhance our manufacturing processes and marketing opportunities. Our most recent acquisition, Dayco Industrial Power Transmission, produces and markets power transmission belts and accessories used by industrial customers. Renamed Carlisle Power Transmission (CPT), it has been a consistently profitable business that brings a broad product offering, leadership in niche markets in which we already participate and significant aftermarket content. CPT has broad customer dispersion, substantial barriers to entry, and synergies with our other specialty rubber products companies.
Carlisle continues to benefit from its excellent infrastructure, as well as the capacity to grow. This translates into a reduction in capital spending required to maintain our businesses, in addition to increased capacity. We continue to be committed to increasing free cash flow, an objective that will enable us to grow our businesses and take advantage of market opportunities. 2001 was a record year for cash generated by operations with $223 million produced during the year. We believe the efficient use of our assets coupled with conservative cash management will enable us to make product line and facility expansions as well as position us to acquire companies that are accretive and can be bolted on to our existing strong units.
The year 2001 was marked with challenges and the changes required to meet them, but it was also a year of renewed commitment to our customers, to the markets we serve, and to our shareowners. We are confident we have the facilities, the strategy, and most importantly, the people, needed to win in 2002. As the American economy recovers from the recession of 2001 we will build on that which has made Carlisle Companies Incorporated a success in the past while creating opportunities to ensure a strong future.
Richmond D. McKinnish
President and Chief Executive Officer